An environmental planner tries to minimize the environmental impacts of housing, industrial, and transportation-related construction projects. Environmental planners help project managers navigate the environmental permitting process where they review a site to investigate potential environmental effects. This includes the effects of natural disasters.
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Environmental engineers use the basis of engineering, soil science, biology, and chemistry to develop solutions to problems in the environment. Some of their efforts involve recycling, waste disposal, public health, water and air pollution control. Many are engaged in solving practical, yet global issues such as unsafe drinking water, climate change, and environmental sustainability.
At the core of scientific visualization is the representation of data graphically - through images, animations, and videos - to improve understanding and develop insight. Data visualizers develop data-driven images, maps, and visualizations from information collected by Earth-observing satellites, airborne missions, and ground measurements. Visualizations allow us to explore data, phenomena and behavior; they are particularly effective for showing large scales of time and space, and "invisible" processes (e.g. flows of energy and matter) as integral parts of the models.
Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices including tools, engines, and machines. These are essential systems in platforms in NASA's Earth Science missions, like satellite and airborne missions. Mechanical engineers work mostly in engineering services, research and development, and manufacturing.
Data scientists work with data captured by scientific instruments or generated by a simulator, as well as data that is processed by software and stored in computer systems. They work with scientists to analyze databases and files using data management techniques and statistics. From changes in sea level, atmospheric composition, or land use, data scientists help make sense of the petabytes of data that NASA collects and stores.
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Follow along as NASA visualizer Kel Elkins walks you through three visualizations (Dust Crossing, Typhoon Hagupit, and Aquarius Sea Surface Salinity) and answers questions about his work, education, and career.
Software engineers play an important role at NASA as this field supports the success of our missions on Earth and beyond. This field will continue to grow as it helps NASA address the many challenges that our agency faces.